Mies tongue-in-cheek?

In the lobby of the old IBM building you will now find bronzed Barelona chairs and bronzed Mies daybeds. DeStefano & Partners is “renovating” the lobby, but is it true, as I’m told, that Philippe Starck designed this lobby furniture? And that it’s his tongue-in-cheek take on Mies? And that the building is considering putting a hotel in there? That could also be designed by Starck.

Well, we know the building is running scared, now that many of its views up the river are blocked by the ever-rising Trump Tower. Many tenants are leaving IBM, which is now known as 330 North Wabash. The owners are also thinking of taking the building condo.

Okay. But in the long run they’d be better off honoring their heritage, rather than defacing it to supposedly make it more suitable to contemporary tastes.

The signs that tell which floors the elevators stop at have also been changed – the original pieces – beautiful and perfectly good – have been replaced by new signs that are too large, too gaudy and the wrong shade and tone. I hope they saved the originals.

Caulk has been placed in the famous Mies corners of the travertine, destroying his interesting connection and philosophically profound meeting of two planes.

In Mies’ buildings especially, the details are important and are a part of the whole.

At least a couple of the forward thinking design firms in the building have complained to the management about this misplaced “updating” of a masterwork.

Photos are on their way.

-E

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2 Responses to “”

  1. Brian Says:

    So where are they?

  2. Edward Says:

    Done. Finally. See subsequent post.

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